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Mississippi Moments Podcast

Updated 5 days ago

Education
Courses
History
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Mississippi Moments, a weekly radio program airing on Mississippi Public Broadcasting, is a partnership between the University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage, the Mississippi Humanities Council, and MPB.

Read more

Mississippi Moments, a weekly radio program airing on Mississippi Public Broadcasting, is a partnership between the University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage, the Mississippi Humanities Council, and MPB.

iTunes Ratings

18 Ratings
Average Ratings
13
5
0
0
0

Great.

By Gladesgator - Sep 09 2019
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Love the podcast!

Fantastic podcast!!

By Dimples72 - Aug 24 2011
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A great oral history podcast with really interesting stories.

iTunes Ratings

18 Ratings
Average Ratings
13
5
0
0
0

Great.

By Gladesgator - Sep 09 2019
Read more
Love the podcast!

Fantastic podcast!!

By Dimples72 - Aug 24 2011
Read more
A great oral history podcast with really interesting stories.
Cover image of Mississippi Moments Podcast

Mississippi Moments Podcast

Latest release on Jan 13, 2020

Read more

Mississippi Moments, a weekly radio program airing on Mississippi Public Broadcasting, is a partnership between the University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage, the Mississippi Humanities Council, and MPB.

Rank #1: MSM 595 Jerry Clower - A Home in the Navy

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After Japan attacked the US Navy Base at Pearl Harbor in December of 1941, thousands of American teenagers volunteered to go and fight. In this episode, humorist Jerry Clower of Liberty, Mississippi, explains how growing up on a farm prepared him for life in the Navy. Raised in the rural South, Clower’s perceptions of race were limited to Black or White. He recalls an incident in basic training that opened his eyes to a wider world of ethnicity and prejudice. (caution: uses a racist word that he had never heard prior to joining up.)

Clower served as a radio operator on the aircraft carrier, USS Hornet, in the Pacific Theater. He remembers the battles for Iwo Jima and Okinawa and the lessons they learned from each.

While serving aboard the Hornet, Clower survived several attacks by Kamikazes. He describes feeling conflicted about watching the Japanese pilots die, and discusses suffering from symptoms of PTSD for many years after the war.

PHOTO: courtesy of the Clower family.

Dec 03 2018

8mins

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Rank #2: MSM 431 Ethel Patton D'Anjou - Family Lore

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Family history is our personal connection to the past. In this week's episode, Ethel Patton D’Anjou of Claiborne County tells the story of her great grandfather’s escape from slavery. She also shares the tale of how her great grandmother, a native American was spared from the Trail of Tears by her birth parents and ended up in Mound Bayou.

PODCAST EXTRA: Alcorn University was founded in 1871 to educate the descendants of former slaves. Ethel Patton D’Anjou recounts her grandparent’s decision to come to Alcorn and open their own business. She hopes that her family’s history continues to provide inspiration for generations to come.

Mar 09 2015

4mins

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Rank #3: MSM 435 Ray Ward - McComb Rail Road Maintenance Shop

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For decades the Illinois Central Rail Road Maintenance Shop was one of the largest employers in McComb. In this episode, Ray Ward remembers signing on as a shop apprentice back in 1953. Ward recalls working in the car shop and the assembly line-like manner they used to rebuild the cars.

In order to save money and improve safety, Illionois Central offered cash rewards for employee suggestions at its McComb Maintenance Shop. Ward describes how the program worked and some suggestions he made for his job.

Podcast Bonus: When he wasn’t working, Ward loved riding horses.  He relates how one late night ride turned into a practical joke on his co-workers.

Apr 20 2015

6mins

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Rank #4: MSMo 365 Dr. John Allums - Air Force Intelligence Officer

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Leakesville native, Dr. John Allums was teaching at the University of Georgia in 1951 when the Korean War began. He recounts making the transition from college professor to Air Force Intelligence Officer. He also explains how he worked with representatives from various government agencies to prepare reports for the president. 

On May 1st, 1960, a US U2 spy plane was shot done by the Soviet government while on a mission to photograph Russian military bases. Allums discusses why he feels that President Eisenhower made a mistake when he publicly acknowledged the U2 program.

Sep 20 2013

4mins

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Rank #5: MSM 599 Shelby Foote - A Deliberate Writer

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Mississippi author Shelby Foote, best known for his three volume history of the American Civil War, was born in Greenville, Mississippi in November of 1916. In this episode, we revisit his oral history interview, conducted by Dr. Orley B. Caudill on March 4, 1975, at his home in Memphis.

Foote discusses growing up in Greenville, how everyone attended the same school and what they did for fun during the Great Depression. He was just five years old when his father passed away, leaving him and his mother alone. He recalls how his mother always supported his decisions and never said hurtful things.

Anticipating America’s entrance into WWII, Foote left college after two years, returned to Mississippi and joined the National Guard. He remembers writing his first novel while waiting to be deployed, and selling short stories to the Saturday Evening Post. He also talks about his style of writing, which he describes as a slow, deliberate process.

Jan 14 2019

9mins

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Rank #6: MSM 606 Dr. Tom Mayer - McComb Railroad Doctor

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After graduating from medical school in 1947, Dr. Tom Mayer took a temporary job with the Mississippi State Department of Health while waiting to begin his internship. In this episode, he remembers trying to vaccinate school children in Walthall County. Later, he returned to McComb to set up a medical practice at the urging of a friend.

In the mid-1950s, Mayer was hired by the Illinois Central Railroad to be the company doctor. He discusses the advantages and disadvantages of being a railroad physician. At that time, penicillin had only recently been discovered.  He recalls the limited number of available drugs and one old doctor’s story of a fifty-cent price limit.

Working around trains has always been a dangerous job and as a railroad doctor, Mayer has seen it all. He recounts some of his more memorable cases and reflects on the many friendships he collected during his career.

(contains a bit of graphic description of a patient's injuries)

Mar 11 2019

9mins

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Rank #7: MSMo 409 Cleveland Sellers Jr. - In the Dead of Night

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In 1964, as SNCC coordinators trained volunteers for the Mississippi Freedom Summer project, three others, Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman traveled to Philadelphia, MS to investigate a church burning.

In this episode, Cleveland Sellers recounts how he and seven other coordinators went in search of those three when they went missing. Sellers describes the extraordinary lengths their group went to, to avoid being spotted as they searched for their friends.

After several days of searching through woods and empty buildings in the dead of night, Sellers’ group was forced to abandon their search.

The bodies of Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman were eventually found on August 4th, 1964.

Aug 08 2014

4mins

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Rank #8: MSM 544 James W. Smith - Island Hopping with the Seabees

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The U.S. Navy’s Construction Battalions, known as the Seabees, built roads and airfields across the Pacific Theater during WWII.    In this episode, James Smith recalls his service with the Seabees beginning in 1943. Smith shares his memories of training with the Marines and the trip through the Panama Canal on the first large ship he ever saw.  He also discusses how the Seabees would distill their own bootleg whiskey and his unconventional way of doing laundry aboard their small transport ship.

PODCAST EXTRA: Smith’s last assignment as a Seabee was repairing an airfield on the recently-liberated island of Okinawa.  He discusses the Okinawans’ history with the Japanese and the devastating cost of “liberation.”

Oct 16 2017

9mins

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Rank #9: MSM 580 Coach Reed Green - Southern Miss Football before WWII

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The University of Southern Mississippi was still the Mississippi State Teachers College when Bernard Reed Green graduated in May of 1934.  In this episode, he recalls his decision to come back that fall as the Freshman Football Coach.  According to Green, his coaching style differed from that of Coach Pooley Hubert, the man who hired him, and how that difference had a positive impact on the team’s performance.  He explains his philosophy and why he made a practice of recruiting new players from local junior colleges.

In 1942, as the United States prepared for war, Mississippi Southern College as the school was known by then, suspended all intercollegiate sports activities. Green remembers how he found jobs for his football players so they could remain in school. With so many students serving in the military during the war, Mississippi Southern faced the possibility of having to permanently close its doors.  Green recounts how he and others lobbied the Pentagon for an officer training school to be located on campus. He explains that hosting the OTS and allowing the officer trainees to live in the empty men’s athletic dorm known as The Rock, enabled the institution to remain solvent during those lean war years.

PHOTO: Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame (Wikipedia)

Jul 30 2018

8mins

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Rank #10: MSM 562 LeGrand Capers - The Vicksburg National Military Park

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On August 7, 1975, LeGrand Capers sat down with the Center for Oral History for the first part of a two-day interview. A lifelong resident of Vicksburg, Mississippi, Capers or “Doc” as he was known to his friends, was considered the town historian. His natural curiosity, love of the Arts, and memory for details made him the right person for the job. Born in 1900, Capers knew many Civil War veterans and folks who had survived the months-long siege of the city President Lincoln considered essential to a northern victory.  In this episode, Capers remembers the hours spent as a young man, listening to stories of battles fought and hardships endured.

The Vicksburg National Military Park was established in 1899 to commemorate the siege of the city during the Civil War.  Capers remembers the construction of the various state monuments and searching for relics on the battlefield as a boy. In 1916, a movie about the Civil War was filmed in the park. Capers describes joining the Mississippi National Guard in order to work as an extra on the film. After filming was completed and the country prepared to enter WWI, Capers’ father had to pull strings to get his under-aged son’s enlistment in the Guard struck so he could return to school.

In 1917, a joint reunion of Confederate and Union veterans was held at the national park in Vicksburg. Capers recalls the raucous arguments between the former foes and one old-timer who was a little too frank for polite company. There is a bit of profane language in this last story so parents beware.

PHOTO: larry-jan-tvc.net

Mar 12 2018

7mins

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Rank #11: MSM 563 LeGrand Capers, Pt. 2 - Vicksburg Vice - Bars, Brothels, and Bootleggers

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In 1917, Mississippi passed the Bone Dry law, prohibiting the sale and consumption of all forms of alcohol. In this episode, LeGrand Capers remembers Vicksburg’s fifty saloons, and how the city reacted to their closing. After alcohol was outlawed in the U.S. in 1920, bootleggers began making and selling homemade liquor. Capers describes Vicksburg’s moonshine marketers and how police looked the other way.

Until it was shut down during WW I, Vicksburg was also home to a thriving red-light district. Capers recalls the city’s ornate palaces of gambling and prostitution. Born in Vicksburg in 1900, Capers came of age as the glory-days of the red-light district were waning. He discusses selling shoes to the ladies of #15 China Street as a boy, and spending time there when he was older. 

May not be suitable for young historians.

PHOTO: Washington Street, Vicksburg, 1915

Mar 19 2018

9mins

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Rank #12: MSM 552 Gail Goldberg - Jewish Holiday Foods

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Growing up in the Delta, Gail Goldberg celebrated all the traditional Jewish holidays with her family. In this episode, she describes some of the foods associated with certain holidays such as Chanukah, Rosh Hashanah and Passover and why some foods are forbidden.

Since marrying into the Goldberg family and moving to Greenwood in the late ’70s, Gail and her mother-in-law have worked together to make sure the Jewish traditions are not forgotten.  She reflects on how family recipes and practices have evolved as their family has grown.

Of all the Jewish holidays Gail Goldberg’s family observes, Rosh Hashanah is her favorite. She discusses the weeks of planning required to feed all the family and friends who come to celebrate.

PHOTO: Wiki Commons

Dec 18 2017

11mins

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Rank #13: MS Mo 377 Brumfield and Reeves - Steam Power!!

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Tom Brumfield and M.R. Reeves of McComb began working for the railroad in 1941. They explain how their family and friends influenced thir decision to become firemen shoveling coal into the massive steam locomotives.

Railroading has always been a dangerous business.  Reeves recalls the time a locomotive he was on hit a car and went off an embankment.

Jan 13 2014

4mins

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Rank #14: MSM 610 LaMont Martin - A Black Soldier's Memories of WWII

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Throughout WWII, U.S. armed forces remained segregated along racial lines. Even though over 900,000 African-Americans served in the armed forces during the war—proving their worth time and again—they were still viewed with suspicion by many of their white commanding officers and others.

LaMont Martin of Gulfport was drafted into the Army after graduating high school in 1942.  In this episode, he shares some of his memories from that time, like how he and his buddy got left behind when the bus carrying them to Fort Benning, Georgia stopped for a meal in Alabama.  After basic training, Martin was stationed in Massachusetts before being deployed to the European Theater. He remembers the day that he and a fellow soldier accidently wandered into a “white” USO club while visiting Boston.

Waiting to cross the English Channel into France, black soldiers were restricted from fraternizing with English women.  LaMont Martin discusses the prevailing attitudes of that time and remembers how the reported rape of a German woman almost led to a race riot and the court-martial of their entire company.

This episode of Mississippi Moments was researched by Sean Buckelew, and produced by Ross Walton, with narration by Bill Ellison.

PHOTO: http://cdn.theatlantic.com/static/infocus/ww2_16/w12_01010428.jpg

Apr 15 2019

16mins

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Rank #15: MSM 526 Ernestine Evans Scott - Separate and Unequal

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Growing up in Benton County, Mississippi in the 1950s, Ernestine Scott had limited contact with white people. Her father would shield his children from visitors to their farm to protect them. Her first impressions of the outside world and the role of African-Americans in it came from television programs of the day.  In response to depictions of blacks as porters and maids and personified by such characters as Amos and Andy, Scott’s father would tell her that black people were better than that and someday, whites would understand the need to show them in a better light.

In this episode, Scott shares her memories of that time, like being chastised by a white man for drinking from the wrong water fountain, how her mother warned her of the need to be careful when speaking to a white person, and her father’s prediction for a better future. She also recalls riding 12 miles on an overcrowded bus to reach the county’s one black school each day.

PHOTO: Benton County courthouse

May 15 2017

6mins

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Rank #16: MSM 424 Randy Yates - Jackson Restaurants of the 70s & 80s

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Jackson has always enjoyed a wide selection of choices when it comes to dining out. In this episode, Randy Yates discusses the important role Greek restaurateurs played in Jackson’s culinary history. Yates began working for Primos Northgate restaurant as a college student.  He remembers the large crowds and the places the staff would go between shifts.

After Primos, Yates took a job working at Scrooge’s.  He credits owner Bill Latham and Don Primos for teaching him some important job skills. 

Today, Randy Yates is co-owner of the Ajax Diner, on the Square, in Oxford.

Feb 06 2015

4mins

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Rank #17: MSM 536 Mac Alford - The Neshoba County Fair

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Founded in 1889, the Neshoba County Fair is the largest campground fair in the nation.  In this episode, Mac Alford discusses his family’s long history with the fair beginning with the story of how his grandparents built their first fair cabin in the early 1900s. According to Alford, the early fair cabins were primitive structures built with reclaimed materials. He explains why the cabins require yearly maintenance and recalls how his father enjoyed the work.

Alford began coming to his family’s cabin when he was just a toddler. He recounts his earliest memories and the family food traditions that made their time at the fair so special. One of the traditional entertainments at the fair is harness horse racing. Alford remembers how his family would travel to different events to watch their friends compete.

One of Alford’s favorite things to do at the Neshoba County Fair is to sit on the front porch of his family’s cabin. He describes the peaceful mornings there and the joy of watching friends and former students pass by.

PHOTO: http://www.neshobacountyfair.org

Aug 07 2017

7mins

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Rank #18: MSM 627 Jimmie W. Person - Growing Up in Port Gibson

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Jimmie Person grew up in Port Gibson, Mississippi during the 1930s.  In this episode, he recalls summers on his father’s plantation and the warm, nurturing environment small-town life provided the children.  Back when Person was a child, the closest hospital to Port Gibson was in Vicksburg. He remembers how doctors would make houses calls, and the childhood diseases of that time.

When Person reached high school, he attended Chamberlain-Hunt Military Academy in Port Gibson. He reflects on life at the all-male school and how they hosted off-campus dances in an old ballroom.

PODCAST BONUS: Person was in his freshman year at Mississippi State when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.  He shares those vivid memories and discusses how he ended up as a Military Policeman at a base in England.

PHOTO: MS Dept. of Archives and History

Sep 02 2019

11mins

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Rank #19: MSM 622 William Booth - Tupelo Driving with Pappy Booth

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Bill Booth’s grandfather, Tom Booth, came to Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1912. There, he opened a hardware store on Main Street. “Pappy” Booth soon sold the business to his son, George H. Booth who changed the name to Tupelo Hardware. Owned and operated by the Booth family since 1926, it remains for many, the go-to place for hard-to-find tools. Famously, Gladys Presley bought her son Elvis, his first guitar there.

In this interview, conducted in 1991, Bill Booth shares with us some memories of his grandfather and of life growing up in Tupelo. During the early days of automobile travel, most Mississippi roads were primitive, unpaved wagon trails. Booth recalls how his grandfather once stopped to help a friend who was stuck in a stream.

As a lifelong citizen of Tupelo, Booth witnessed a lot of important changes over the years. He discusses the city’s first traffic light and one cantankerous driver’s reaction to it. For many Mississippians, their first time behind the wheel of a car was on a secluded country road. Booth recounts learning to drive his grandfather’s 1925 Buick on a trip to Shreveport.

PODCAST BONUS: President Franklin D. Roosevelt came to Tupelo in 1934 to deliver a speech on the Tennessee Valley Authority. Booth remembers how his boy scout troop lined the path to the President’s car, and being patted on the head by FDR, afterwards.

PHOTO: MDAH - FDR in Tupelo 1934.

Jul 22 2019

7mins

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Rank #20: MSM 498 Yoset Altamirano - Coming to America

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Yoset Altamirano grew up in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. After graduation, she spent five years teaching music at a private school, but felt frustrated that music education was not emphasized more in her native country. In this episode, she recalls trying to instill an appreciation of music in her students and in their parents as well.

Altamirano soon received a scholarship to attend university but because music was not offered as a major, studied marketing instead. She still made time to perform in plays and opera and while working on a production of an opera by Verdi she met her husband who was a classical musician studying at the University of Southern Mississippi.  After they married in 1998, she travelled with him to Hattiesburg where she auditioned for the choir and was awarded a scholarship.

According to Altamirano, studying music in the United States was a great opportunity.  At the time the interview was conducted in 2002, she related feeling torn between staying here and returning to Honduras.

Sep 26 2016

7mins

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MSM 640 Christa Dunn Hode - Biloxi Queen of Carnival 1971

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For Gulf Coast residents, January means Mardi Gras season and in the South, no Super Bowl party is complete without a King Cake. Beyond the traditional Carnival celebrations in Mobile, Biloxi, and New Orleans, many other southern cities have established their own annual parades and festivities in recent years.

Ocean Springs native, Christa Hode grew up attending the Biloxi Mardi Gras parades with her family. In this episode, she remembers the day her father asked if she would like to be the Queen of Carnival for 1971. As Queen Ixolib for the Biloxi Mardi Gras, Hode wore an elaborate gown and long flowing train.  She describes having the gown made in New Orleans and the heavy fabrics they used back then.

Hode has many fond memories of being the Biloxi Queen. She remembers how cold it was during the night parade and how much fun she had waving to the crowds. Having spent her life participating in Mardi Gras festivities, Hode has witnessed the comradery and sense of community it provides Gulf Coast residents. She also appreciates the economic benefits and tourism Carnival brings to the area.

Jan 13 2020

11mins

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MSM 639 Col. C.R. Cadenhead - B-24 Bomber Squadrons in Italy

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During WWII, a key component of the Allied strategy to defeat the Axis powers in Europe was a sustained aerial bombing campaign against key German military and civilian targets. Despite the vaunted reputation the B-17 bomber achieved, they were outnumbered by the lesser known B-24 Liberator.

Greenville native, Colonial C.R. Cadenhead trained to be an B-24 bomber pilot. In this episode, he shared some memories of his time flying missions over Germany.  Cadenhead explains how he and his crew dined on fancy French cuisine while on their way to Europe and how they helped a shell-shocked bombardier complete his tour of duty.  He also describes how, on one mission, his crew made it back to base after losing two of their four engines with some help from the Tuskegee Airmen.

PODCAST EXTRA: After completing his tour of duty in Europe, Cadenhead expected to be sent home.  Instead he was shipped to California to prepared for the invasion of Japan.  He remembers how the sudden end of the war in 1945 allowed him to return to college that fall and play football for Mississippi State.

This episode of Mississippi Moments was researched by Hayley Hasik and produced by Ross Walton, with narration by Bill Ellison.

PHOTO: US Air Force

Jan 06 2020

9mins

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MSM 638 Betty McGehee - Crossing the Bridge from Vidalia to Natchez

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Betty McGehee grew up on Scotland Plantation in Vidalia, Louisiana, in the 1930s and 40s. Later, she married a Natchez native and crossed the river for good. In this episode, McGehee shares some memories from her childhood. She recounts raising chickens and selling the eggs to earn extra spending money. She also discusses how they would collect rainwater to drink in an above-ground storage tank and why her father later dug a well on their farm.

The Natchez-Vidalia bridge across the Mississippi river was completed in October of 1940. McGehee recalls crossing the river by ferry and how the bridge made traveling so much easier. When the bridge was first completed, drivers on the Mississippi side had to pay a 50-cent toll. McGehee explains how her Natchez boyfriend would wait for her on his side of the bridge to save money.

Dec 30 2019

9mins

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MSM 637 Jackie Hancock Schulze - An Innocent Age in Natchez

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Jackie Hancock Schulze grew up in Natchez during the 1930s and 40s, in the house built by her great-grandfather, Natchez Mayor William G. Benbrook. In this episode, taken from her 2004 interview, she shares some precious childhood memories of family and friends and her hometown.

Schulze recounts going to the movies downtown, learning to swim in the Elks Club swimming pool and having “Coca-Cola parties” with her friends. She describes these gatherings as the product of a simpler, more innocent age.

When Schulze was a child, her grandmother would take her to New Orleans each summer to shop. She remembers staying on Canal Street and the amazing things to see and do in the Big Easy.

Years after Schulze left Natchez, she moved back to the family homestead, which by then was unoccupied.  After celebrating so many holidays in the dining room, surrounded by her loving family, she found it hard to eat there alone.

Jackie Schulze passed away on September 13, 2005.

Dec 09 2019

10mins

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MSM 636 Billie Rossie Tonos - The Delta Lebanese Community

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Billie Rossie Tonos’s family immigrated from Lebanon and opened a store in Clarksdale. In this episode, she recounts how her parents then moved to Shaw and opened their own business with help from the Lebanese community.

During the Great Depression, many small business owners struggled to keep their doors opened. Tonos recalls her parent’s resourcefulness during that difficult time.

As the daughter of Lebanese immigrants, Tonos’s mother was proud to be an American citizen. She describes her mother’s fierce patriotism when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.

Being part of the Delta Lebanese community gave Billie Tonos a sense of belonging and fellowship. She remembers how there was always room at the table for family and friends, especially during the holidays.

This episode of Mississippi Moments was researched by Hayley Hasik and produced by Ross Walton, with narration by Bill Ellison.

PHOTO: Schlatter.org

Dec 02 2019

7mins

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MSM 635 Charlsie Mae Hammond - Growing Up in Ethel, Mississippi

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Charlsie Mae Graham Hammond grew up in Ethel, Mississippi, just outside of Kosciusko in the 1930s and 40s. In this episode, taken from her 2001 interview, she shares some cherished childhood memories. She discusses her father’s job at the sawmill there and how he would take her and her brothers on business trips occasionally to provide them a real-world education.

Growing up in a large family, Hammond spent much of her free time outdoors. She recounts watching Westerns with her parents and playing “cowboys” with her siblings and friends. As a child, Hammond also enjoyed a close relationship with her maternal grandparents. She recalls her grandfather as a good-natured shopkeeper and her grandmother as an entrepreneur.

Hammond has many fond memories of life in Ethel. She describes how she and her best friend would ride the train to Kosciusko, listen to favorite programs on the radio, or travel to the Delta with her family to visit her paternal grandparents.

Charlsie Mae Hammond enjoyed a long career as a public school teacher. She taught in the Port Gibson Public Schools, the Ethel Public Schools, and the Kosciusko Public Schools. She was a member of Kosciusko First Baptist Church, serving in various departments of the church. She was also active as a volunteer in organizations of her town and community. She passed away on June 3, 2017.

Nov 18 2019

9mins

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MSM 634 Dr. Kent Wyatt - Academic Excellence at Delta State University

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Dr. Kent Wyatt became the President of Delta State University in 1975. In this episode, Wyatt shares some of the accomplishments and challenges of his tenure. He also explains the importance of having an emphasis on academic excellence and an “open door” policy for faculty and students.

When Wyatt took over as President of Delta State in 1975, inflation made it difficult to control operating costs. He recalls how that early experience foreshadowed future shortfalls brought on by statewide budget cuts. Throughout Wyatt’s tenure as the President of Delta State, he insisted on developing programs that met the academic needs of the Mississippi Delta. He discusses some of those programs.

The Bologna Performing Arts Center at Delta State University was built in 1994 through state funding from the Mississippi legislature. Dr. Kent Wyatt explains the importance of having such a Center in the Delta.

This episode of Mississippi Moments was researched by Hayley Hasik and produced by Ross Walton, with narration by Bill Ellison.

PHOTO: http://inauguration.deltastate.edu/past-presidents/

Nov 11 2019

14mins

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MSM 633 Fred Clark, Sr., Part Two - The Freedom Riders

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As a young man, Fred Clark of Jackson traveled to Midway, Georgia, to attend a series of meetings with Dr. Martin Luther King. In this episode, he recalls fearing for his safety as the group planned protests across the Jim Crow South.

The Freedom Riders were protesters who rode interstate buses to challenge southern segregation laws. Clark describes being arrested in Jackson in June of 1961 for trying to buy a ticket from the whites-only window. So many Freedom Riders were arrested in Jackson, many were taken to Parchman to handle the overflow. Clark remembers how their nonstop singing led to severe reprisals by prison officials.

PODCAST BONUS: In order to break the spirit of the protesters, prison guards resorted to putting them in windowless iron holding cells known as hotboxes.  Unable to breath in the sweltering heat, Clark describes feelings of panic and being ridiculed by the guards.

PHOTO: MS Dept. of Archives and History

Nov 04 2019

9mins

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MSM 632 Fred Clark, Sr., Part 1 - Overcoming Fear and Oppression

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Fred Clark, Sr. grew up in Jackson, Mississippi, during the 1950s and 60s. In this episode, the first of two parts, he recalls the death of Emmett Till and how fear dominated the black community at that time. As events unfolded around him, Clark was determined to overcome his fear and work to make things better.

During the Civil Rights Movement, local organizers would hold events called Mass Meetings. Clark explains how these gatherings satisfied a variety of needs within the community. After the meetings, he would often catch a ride with civil rights leader Medgar Evers. He describes the sense of dread he felt riding with Evers, even as he marveled at the man’s bravery.

The culture of fear used to maintain social order in the Jim Crow South was deeply ingrained in everyone. Clark explains how being part of a greater movement inspired everyone to do their part.

Oct 28 2019

14mins

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MSM 631 Donald Hemphill - The Homochitto Lumber Company

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In the late 1920s, Donald Hemphill’s father took a job with the Homochitto Lumber Company and the family moved to Bude, Mississippi. In this episode, he shares his memories of growing up in the thriving sawmill town.   At that time, many sawmills provide free company housing for their employees. Hemphill recalls the move to Bude and the primitive conditions in which they lived.

For Hemphill, growing up in Bude was a pleasant and carefree life. He recounts walking home from school to eat lunch and working at the local service station. He also discusses Bude’s prosperous times, and the important role passenger trains played in the people’s lives.

While the Homochitto Lumber Company was in business, life in Bude revolved around the mill’s work whistle.  Hemphill describes the sawmill’s last day and how they tied the whistle down after the last board was cut.

PHOTO: MS Dept. of Archives and History

Oct 14 2019

9mins

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MSM 630 Lou Ginsberg - Growing Up Jewish in Bastrop, Louisiana

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Jewish immigrant, Jacob Kern, migrated from Germany to America in the late 1800s. His daughter, Lourachael Kern Ginsberg recounts how her father paid for twelve of his family members to join them in Bastrop, Louisiana, in 1938. Growing up Jewish in Bastrop, Ginsberg remembers their family was accepted as part of the community. She remembers raising chickens and ducks for food and driving to Monroe to go to Temple.

Ginsberg was attending Tulane University, when she met her future husband Herbie Ginsberg. She recalls knowing immediately that he was ‘the one’, and her mother’s reaction to the news. After the couple married, they moved to his home in Hattiesburg. She describes stopping off at the bootleggers to pick up a bottle for his law partner and future Governor, Paul B. Johnson, Jr.

Sep 30 2019

11mins

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MSM 629 Lucy Allen - Two Mississippi Museums, Part 2

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Funding for two Mississippi museums was approved by the state legislature in 2011. In this episode, Lucy Allen recalls the planning process for the Civil Rights Museum and the message contained in its design. When Mississippi announced plans to build a civil rights museum, some doubted it would tell the whole story.  Allen explains how the state’s willingness to ‘go there,’ resulted in a powerful learning experience.

With a mandate that the two museums be opened by the State’s Centennial celebration in 2017, Allen’s team was hard pressed to deliver on time.  She recounts the process of selecting the design firms and the endless meetings they sat through.

As the opening day approached for the Two Mississippi Museums, there were countless small details to be addressed.  Allen remembers the pre-opening tours and feeling proud of a job well done.

Sep 23 2019

17mins

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MSM 628 Lucy Allen - The Two Mississippi Museums, Part 1

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Lucy Allen moved from North Carolina to Mississippi and spent the next seven years teaching school. In this episode, she explains how her interest in photography led to a career with the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. 

In 1961, the first State Historical Museum for Mississippi opened in the Old Capitol building. Allen discusses conditions that highlighted the need for a new museum and archives and how MDAH began planning for a new state museum in 1998. She recalls how Hurricane Katrina devastated the old museum in 2005 and altered all their plans.

PODCAST EXTRA: As MDAH developed plans for a new state history museum, the State Legislature’s Black Caucus continued their years-long push for a separate civil rights museum to be located on the campus of Tougaloo College. Allen recounts how Governor Haley Barbour, former Governor William Winter, and Judge Reuben Anderson worked with others to combine the two museums together into one state-funded project.

Don’t miss next week’s episode as Allen discusses the challenges they faced in making the Two Mississippi Museums a reality!

PHOTO: Two Mississippi Museums architectural drawing

Sep 16 2019

17mins

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MSM 627 Jimmie W. Person - Growing Up in Port Gibson

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Jimmie Person grew up in Port Gibson, Mississippi during the 1930s.  In this episode, he recalls summers on his father’s plantation and the warm, nurturing environment small-town life provided the children.  Back when Person was a child, the closest hospital to Port Gibson was in Vicksburg. He remembers how doctors would make houses calls, and the childhood diseases of that time.

When Person reached high school, he attended Chamberlain-Hunt Military Academy in Port Gibson. He reflects on life at the all-male school and how they hosted off-campus dances in an old ballroom.

PODCAST BONUS: Person was in his freshman year at Mississippi State when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.  He shares those vivid memories and discusses how he ended up as a Military Policeman at a base in England.

PHOTO: MS Dept. of Archives and History

Sep 02 2019

11mins

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MSM 626 Ruth M. Christian - Katrina Keepsakes

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As Hurricane Katrina churned across the Gulf in August of 2005, Ruth Christian left her Pascagoula home to wait out the storm with her son’s mother-in-law, a few miles inland. In this episode, taken from an interview conducted in 2007, she shares her memories of the days following the storm as people struggled to feed themselves. She recalls trying to feed 16 people with anything they could find.

A couple of days after the hurricane, Christian found out her home had been destroyed.  She remembers coming to terms with the loss of everything she owned at the age of 77.

According to Christian, everyone was in a state of shock. She describes the despair she felt combing through the wreckage, and the joy of finding family keepsakes.

PODCAST BONUS: Because Hurricane Georges damaged her home in 1998, Christian decided not to rebuild a second time after Hurricane Katrina. She discusses her decision to move into an apartment, but remain on the Gulf Coast.

Aug 26 2019

9mins

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MSM 625 Franzetta Sanders - Testing the Waters of Equality

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For many young people, participation in the Civil Rights Movement began with a membership in the NAACP. In this episode, Franzetta Sanders of Moss Point recalls joining the group and the work they did to promote Equality for all. During the 1960s, members of the NAACP would test local businesses for compliance with new Civil Rights laws.  Franzetta Sanders describes their work in Moss Point and how the community reacted.

In the Jim Crow South, there were separate public restrooms marked for “Whites Only” and “Blacks Only.” Sanders recounts how a stopover at the Hattiesburg bus station resulted in their bus being surrounded by police.

Most Mississippi public schools did not begin to fully integrate until 1970. As the mother of six children, Sanders worked to make sure they had the best educational opportunities possible. She remembers those difficult early days and how things eventually got better.

During the Civil Rights Movement, Sanders worked diligently to break down racial barriers. She expresses frustration at the apathy of young people who are reluctant to join the NAACP.

This episode of Mississippi Moments was researched by Lucas Somers, and produced by Ross Walton, with narration by Bill Ellison.

PHOTO: USM Digital Collections – Herbert Randall

Aug 19 2019

11mins

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MSM 624 Dr. Henry Maggio - Memories of Hurricane Camille

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Fifty years ago this week, Hurricane Camille left a wide path of destruction across the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  Dr. Henry Maggio was working at a Bay Saint Louis hospital on August 17, 1969 when Camille slammed into the Gulf Coast.  In this episode, he remembers feelings of dread as the storm came ashore.

As Hurricane Camille made landfall, it brought devastating winds and flooding to coastal communities. Maggio describes being stranded in the hospital during the storm. He discusses trying to reach the injured afterwards and his decision to evacuate the hospital.

After the storm was over, the long recovery and rebuilding process began.  Maggio shares his memories from that time, like being reunited with his family, the loss of their new home, and all the people who brought needed supplies to aid in the recovery effort.

PHOTO: Fred Hutchings – Pass Christian, MS after Hurricane Camille      

Aug 12 2019

16mins

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MSM 623 Thurman L. Clark - An American in Paris

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During WWII, young men from cities and towns across the nation, answered the call to serve.  So too, did young men from isolated areas of the country—boys who had never been away from the farms where they were raised—but were still compelled to go to the battlefields of countries they had only read about in textbooks. For many, that rural lifestyle held advantages in wartime.  For example, those who grew up hunting with their fathers found the experience of targeting game with hunting rifles and shotguns useful in the army.

In this episode, Thurman Clark of Laurel remembers training for combat and winning a prize for his marksmanship.

American soldiers deployed to the battlefields of Europe, crossed the Atlantic Ocean by the thousands on troops ships. Clark recalls the misery of being seasick for his entire seventeen-day voyage. As a member of the 66th Infantry Division, Clark was assigned to harass German installations in the occupied city of Lorient, France. He describes dodging artillery fire and the stress of keeping watch for enemy attacks at night.

For many Mississippi farm boys, WWII was their first time traveling far from home. Clark reflects on the culture shock of his time in France and the myriad of memories he brought back.

 PHOTO: wikimedia commons

Aug 05 2019

9mins

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MSM 622 William Booth - Tupelo Driving with Pappy Booth

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Bill Booth’s grandfather, Tom Booth, came to Tupelo, Mississippi, in 1912. There, he opened a hardware store on Main Street. “Pappy” Booth soon sold the business to his son, George H. Booth who changed the name to Tupelo Hardware. Owned and operated by the Booth family since 1926, it remains for many, the go-to place for hard-to-find tools. Famously, Gladys Presley bought her son Elvis, his first guitar there.

In this interview, conducted in 1991, Bill Booth shares with us some memories of his grandfather and of life growing up in Tupelo. During the early days of automobile travel, most Mississippi roads were primitive, unpaved wagon trails. Booth recalls how his grandfather once stopped to help a friend who was stuck in a stream.

As a lifelong citizen of Tupelo, Booth witnessed a lot of important changes over the years. He discusses the city’s first traffic light and one cantankerous driver’s reaction to it. For many Mississippians, their first time behind the wheel of a car was on a secluded country road. Booth recounts learning to drive his grandfather’s 1925 Buick on a trip to Shreveport.

PODCAST BONUS: President Franklin D. Roosevelt came to Tupelo in 1934 to deliver a speech on the Tennessee Valley Authority. Booth remembers how his boy scout troop lined the path to the President’s car, and being patted on the head by FDR, afterwards.

PHOTO: MDAH - FDR in Tupelo 1934.

Jul 22 2019

7mins

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MSm 621 Edmond Boudreaux, Jr. - Gulf Coast Seafood: Challenges Faced

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Edmond Boudreaux’s family came to Biloxi in 1914 to work in the seafood factories. In this episode, he shares his family’s long history in the seafood industry and how his father would work in the factory as child before and after attending school each day.

Growing up on “The Point” in East Biloxi, Boudreaux never thought of his family as poor. He recalls how he and his brothers would play and fish in the nearby marshes and bayous. According to Boudreaux, all people living on the Mississippi Sound develop a connection to the water. He explains how those ties remain constant, even as changes in technology have resulted in fewer people actually working in the seafood industry.

Over the years, the Gulf Coast fishery has weathered challenges from hurricanes, floods, and pollution. Boudreaux discusses those challenges and how recent events have affected the livelihoods of Mississippi fishermen.

Jul 15 2019

11mins

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iTunes Ratings

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Great.

By Gladesgator - Sep 09 2019
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Love the podcast!

Fantastic podcast!!

By Dimples72 - Aug 24 2011
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A great oral history podcast with really interesting stories.